Dyscalculia Screener is an innovative computer-based assessment tool designed to help you identify children ages 6-14 with learning difficulties in math.
What is Dyscalculia?
Dyscalculia is a group of math-based learning difficulties estimated to effect more than eleven million Americans. Sometimes called number blindness, a condition that affects our ability to acquire arithmetic skills.
Dyscalculia is a condition that has recently been discovered. Dyscalculic learners can have difficulties understanding simple number concepts, lack an intuitive grasp of numbers and have problems learning number facts and procedures.
Designed specifically for 6-14 year old students, this computer-based tool is simple to administer and fun for students to take. The screener takes about 30 minutes to administer and distinguishes between students with a poor ability in math and those with this specific learning difficulty. Using standardized data, the program immediately produces an individual diagnostic report and student profile to help you build an individual program for your students.
Installation is fast, taking only a few minutes on any Windows-based computer. At the time of installation, the educator or therapist designates a password that will allow them to input information about the students to be tested and access to test results. Students can be tested multiple times allowing progress to be measured over time, and new students can be entered at any point by the administrator.
For the student, Dyscalculia Screener is colorful and interactive. Since the assessment device is designed for students as young as age six, the interface is straightforward and includes verbal instructions for students who don’t have adequate reading skills. A soft-spoken woman carefully outlines each step. After a brief section orienting the student with basic keyboard instructions, the assessment battery is divided into four sub-tests:
- Simple reaction time: Students respond as dots appear on the screen. The results are used to evaluate response time in other sections.
- Enumeration: Students decide whether the quantity of dots in one circle matches the digit in the other.
- Number Comparison: Students are presented with two digits, often of different physical sizes, and they determine which is greater.
- Arithmetic Achievement (addition and multiplication): The student decides whether the displayed equations are correct or incorrect.
Each section is tailored to the student's age, and Dyscalculia Screener doesn’t tell the student whether they’re right or wrong. The goal is to minimize anxiety and provide a comfortable testing environment. Dyscalculia Screener also carefully prepares each section for the student and affirms that the instructions have been understood before moving forward.
After the test, the teacher can enter the administrative password and access the student’s test results. The student’s results are evaluated and the educator is given a top-level analysis of student test performance: normal for age group, evidence of dyscalculia, problems with arithmetic without dyscalculia, etc. The valuable seventy-five page manual also provides multiple references and recommendations for educators whose students display dyscalculic tendencies.
To bring Dyscalculia Screener to the United States, Tool Factory has partnered with SEMERC, the UK’s leading publisher of technology resources for students of all ages with special educational needs. Dyscalculia Screener was a 2004 winner of the BETT Awards, a British honor recognizing creativity, commitment and innovation in the development of education-related technologies.